Eradicating the bucket system will top the municipality’s agenda to improve living standards in informal settlements over the next four years.
That was the pledge made by Executive Mayor Elza van Lingen in her State of the Municipality Address.
She said it was of great concern that more than 4 000 households still relied on bucket toilets in Kouga despite the national deadline for the eradication of this system having come and gone more than a decade ago.
She said the continued use of bucket toilets by poor communities could not be tolerated.
“By the time this Council term ends, we do not want a single household to rely on buckets. We have been exploring various alternatives and would like to roll out container ablution facilities in informal areas from the new financial year.”
She said that while some of the municipality’s day-to-day operations have been affected by the re-allocation of funds to implement drought relief measures, the municipality would be pushing ahead with the upgrading of informal settlements and projects for which grant funding has been allocated.
“Almost 250 households at Donkerhoek received electricity for this first time in June last year and we will be electrifying a further 270 sites this year.
“The formalisation of Stofwolk in Hankey is also underway,” she said.
“When it comes to bulk sewer upgrades, the good news is that the R85-million upgrade of the Kruisfontein waste water treatment works at Humansdorp has reached practical completion.
“Thanks to the upgrade, the plant will now be able to handle up to 5Ml of sewerage per day. This is sufficient to cater for the existing needs of the Kruisfontein community and will enable government to build further RDP houses.”
She said work on the first 391 RDP houses at Kruisfontein started last year and that work on the top structures of 220 RDP houses at Pellsrus was also expected to commence this year.
“A further R51-million have further been secured for the upgrading of the St Francis Waste Water Treatment Works and a consultant and contractor have been appointed,” she added.